njdoa ffa kristianne dowdPhoto:  Kristianne Dowd speaks at the NJ State Agricultural Convention on February 4 as NJ Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher (left) looks on.

Kristianne Dowd of Freehold, the New Jersey State FFA President, told delegates to the State Agricultural Convention on February 4 in Atlantic City that they need to be proactive and tell their story.  Dowd, the 2015 FFA Speaker at the convention, said product messaging is changing the course of agriculture and farmers must help consumers make educated decisions about what they eat.

“If product messaging is leading to misunderstanding, we must do something about it,” said Dowd.  “It is up to us to be the truth and tell our story about agriculture.”

Dowd urged the delegates to encourage high school students to choose careers in agriculture and to take advantage of CASE courses, Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education, a highly intense, science, math and technology-based agriculture education program.   She said that this change will better-equip students to take on positions in the ever-changing, innovative and high-technology agriculture industry.

Kristianne attends Rutgers University and is studying Agriculture and Food Sciences with aspirations of becoming an agriculture teacher.

Each year, youth speakers are included in the program at the New Jersey State Agricultural Convention.  FFA provides a strong foundation of leadership and career skills for the youth of American and New Jersey and a strong future for the science, business and technology of agriculture.  New Jersey FFA has 2,666 members in 37 chapters.